Surgical Safety Checklist

The percent compliance is calculated as follows:

(# of times all three phases of the surgical safety checklist was performed/
Total Surgeries) x 100 = % compliance/

The surgical safety checklist (SSCL) is considered “performed” when the designated checklist coordinator confirms that surgical team members have implemented and/or addressed all of the necessary tasks and items in each of the three phases: Briefing; Time Out; and Debriefing. Therefore, the SSCL compliance indicator is a process measure, measuring the degree to which all three phases of the SSCL was performed correctly and appropriately for each surgical patient

Patient safety remains the most important priority for Guelph General Hospital and this involves ensuring a safe experience for patients who undergo surgery here. Our patients can expect safe, high quality care, and one tool used to help ensure a positive patient care experience is a surgical safety checklist.

 What is a surgical safety checklist?

A surgical safety checklist is a patient safety communication tool that is used by a team of operating room professionals (nurses, surgeons, anesthesiologists, and others) to discuss important details about each surgical case. In many ways, the surgical checklist is similar to an airline pilot’s checklist used just before take-off. It is a final check prior to surgery used to make sure everyone knows the important medical information they need to know about the patient, all equipment is available and in working order, and everyone is ready to proceed.

 What information is included in a surgical safety checklist?

Some examples of items contained in the checklist:

     The Briefing Phase:

  •  Verify with patient name and procedure to be done
  •  Allergy Check
  •  Medications Check
  •  Operation site, side and procedure
  •  Lab tests, xrays 

     The “Time Out” Phase:

  • Patient position
  • Operation site and side and procedure
  • Antibiotics check

     The Debriefing Phase:

  • Surgeon reviews important items
  • Anesthesiologist reviews important items
  • Nurse reviews correct counts

 Will a surgical safety checklist be used on me?If you undergo a surgery at Guelph General Hospital, you can expect that the surgical safety checklist will be used as part of the procedure. It will be used by your health care team before, during and after your surgery to help the health care team familiarize themselves with your medical history and any special requirements that may be needed for your individual case.